G Files: Lot 53D413: Telegram

The Commander in Chief, Far East (Ridgway) to the Joint Chiefs of Staff

top secret

C–68131. Ref your msg JCS 90943 Sept 501 and para 13 your msg JCS 95977 July 51.2

1. Aerial recon has revealed extensive stockpiling of matériel and [Page 767] sup at Najin (Rashin) (42 degrees 15 minutes North–130 degrees 19 minutes East). Oil storage fac and rail repair shops are located in this area which also contains extensive marshalling yards and dock areas. The highway and rail complex into and out of Najin is suitable for funnelling sup through this city to all areas to the south. There is every indication that Najin is a principal focal point for intensifying the enemy sup build-up in the battle area.

2. Recent intel repts indicate Najin now being utilized for covert ocean shipping to east coast enemy ports.

3. Recm restriction be lifted earliest against atk Najin (Rashin) with FECOM Air and Naval Forces.

4. Am convinced atk can be made against this vital enemy installation without violating Soviet border and to substantial advantage of UN Comd in Korea.3

  1. In this message, not printed, the Joint Chiefs of Staff had informed General MacArthur that they wished no further attacks to be made against Rashin; see Schnabel, Policy and Direction, p. 346, and Foreign Relations, 1950, vol. vii, footnote 1, p. 722.
  2. Dated July 10, p. 646.
  3. The Joint Chiefs of Staff on August 3 requested the Secretary of Defense to secure the approval of the President for lifting the restriction on the bombing of Rashin. On August 8 the Joint Chiefs of Staff sent the following telegram, JCS 98380, to CINCFE:

    “Prior to making decision and in order to assess carefully the risks surrounding actions which might follow approval of recommendation in Para 3 your C 68131, request early info as to details of your plans for operations against Rashin.”

    General Ridgway in telegram CX–68643, dated August 10, informed the Joint Chiefs of Staff that a major strike was not considered desirable because weather conditions made visual bombing conditions uncertain, but one or more normal effort strikes by B–29’s could better accomplish the purpose and the target could be destroyed without violating the border.

    The Joint Chiefs of Staff on August 10 again requested the Secretary of Defense to obtain the President’s approval, and the President on August 10 approved the telegram to CINCFE, JCS 98632, which read as follows:

    “From JCS. Reur C–68131 and CX–68643.

    “1. Restrictions on attacks on Rashin are removed insofar as air action is concerned. Naval surface bombardment will not be employed without further reference to JCS. Air attacks will be subject to following stipulations:

    a. Air attacks will be made only under visual conditions.

    b. Every element of attacking air elements will be thoroughly briefed to avoid violation of Soviet and Manchurian borders.

    c. No unusual publicity will be accorded such attacks.

    “2. Above instructions do not rescind previous instructions contained in JCS 95977, Jul 51, to effect that ‘no air operations or naval surface operations will be conducted within 12 miles of USSR territory on the Asiatic mainland.’” (JCS Files)